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Running Background:

marathon photoI consider myself an intermediate runner and I primarily run for fitness. I ran the Fargo Marathon because it was one of the few that fit into my spring work schedule. Having run there last year, I knew the organizers did a great job for such a young race and the crowd support is better than expected.

Training:

Just after Christmas, I started having some plantar problems that then brought on some IT band issues on the other leg. Though I tried to run through both of these injuries (my first since I started running about 8 years ago) my real training was shortened to about 1 1/2 months. I averaged 65-70 miles per week during my relatively short training period.

The best advice I received while training for this race was to ice, ice, ice. It really does make a difference, even if you are not experiencing any pain.

Race Day:

The 2008 Fargo Marathon wasn't quite what I expected.

The morning of the race could not have had any better weather for a marathon. Upper 40's, sunny, no wind. The first half of the race winds south before heading back north to finish where we started, at the Fargo Dome. This part of the race was uneventful. I latched on with a group of 3 guys that were also gunning for the same time, so were able to keep each other company. As we started heading north for the second half of the race, we quickly realized that our "no wind" start had quickly changed to a lot of wind, straight out of the north. The elements caused our group to dwindle down to two. We were right on pace until about mile 21 when I fell off and never quite recovered. It would be wrong of me to blame the wind for my result because there were other people that did run their expected race. I was just not one of them. Having crashed about the same point in this race as my last one, I realize that I need to do longer long runs and/or more long runs.

Recovery:

My recovery wasn't too bad. I rode bike every day for the first week before starting up some light running.

Running Gear Recommendations:

Brooks Hansons-Brooks Shorts
These shorts are really no better than my other favorites, but I really respect the work done by the guys on the HBDP team. Brian Sell is an animal!
Read about the Hansons-Brooks Original Distance Project.
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Jelly Belly Sport Beans
Gels do not sit well with me and I had tried another kind of energy substitute in previous races, but I liked the sport beans even more. Plus, I was able to get a bunch of them at a VERY low cost. Bonus!
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Nike Air Max Moto
Though I ran the race in another Nike shoe, I did the bulk of my training in the Max Moto, with good results. The current one is not as stiff as the early versions.
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Tips/Words of Encouragement:

Go watch the finish of a race. Sure some of the people are bloody and limping around, but it is one of the most energizing environments you will find.

Plans to Run Another:

I'm planning to continue to run marathons. I want to keep running as long as I can, because it helps to make me a better person. Days without running are just not the same.

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